Counterproductive Persistence

And that’s a very conservative estimate. Think about it. 100,000 (or actually closer to 150,000) people. For what? It’s a small town with no strategic importance. Why did they all have to die?

A Ukrainian officer reports on how, at the beginning of the war, he managed to defend his area with a tiny group of men against a Russian assault force 30 times the size of the Ukrainian defensive troop.

“We were stunned,” he says, “to see that they would repeat the same attack in the exact same spot, 10, 15, 20 times in a row. That’s the only spot we were able to defend, and they kept hitting it. If they tried to outflank us, we’d be done for because we had no resources to defend the flanks. But they refused to deviate from the original plan by a millimeter. By the end, we were laughing because we destroyed all of them simply because they kept doing the same thing.”

Lesson learned: if something doesn’t work, do something else.

7 thoughts on “Counterproductive Persistence

    1. It’s the Soviet school of military affairs. The commanders are being trained like their teachers were trained, etc. This was how it was done in the USSR, a totalitarian regime, where human life wasn’t valued. This is how the USSR won WWII. Enormous sacrifices if human life and zero strategy.


      1. “Soviet school of military affairs”

        While agreeing with everything you wrote, I’ll add what Galeev wrote about last year (I forget if he used the exact term): Negative selection.
        The quickest way for your military career to go nowhere in russia is to show any spark of innovation or competence because that means you’re a threat to those above you and the higher you get before you show any ability the bigger a threat you are to the government itself (yes, it’s irrational magic thinking but this is russia….)
        Decades and decades of weeding out competence and insight in favor of placeholders who carefully expell anything like novelty or initiative from their thinking processes and you get the modern russian army and hundreds of thousands of dead russian men (russia hates its younger male population more than the Taliban hates women like you…..).

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Well not quite. The Soviets actually did show great skill, intelligence and creativity in how they fought the Germans in WWII and they actually understood warfare at a higher level ultimately than the Germans. The Soviets are who invented the operational level of warfare and the U.S. Army actually based part of its fighting doctrine off of the Soviet school of warfare starting in the 1980s. The idea that the Soviets defeated the Germans through mindless wave after wave of unlimited numbers is more a myth that was made up by the German generals after the war to hide that they’d been legitimately out fought by the “subhuman untermensch.”

        However, said intelligence and creativity happened because in order to win the war, Stalin was forced to appoint men based on aptitude as opposed to loyalty. Then after Stalin died, the Soviet Union was no longer a one-man dictatorship where said dictator would worry about generals becoming potential political rivals, and thus the Soviet military was able to have more skilled personnel in place.

        After the Soviet Union broke apart however, the military professionalism it possessed disintegrated and what has been left is a very ramshackle force, and since Putin became dictator, the military is not allowed to become too capable because it could threaten the regime.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Technically casualties include the wounded, so the number dead might be lower. Not that being injured is great either.


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